Posts Tagged ‘higher education’

Central Visits Shelton State and Alabama

Wednesday, April 8th, 2015

What are some hacks to get adjusted to college-life easily? 

What international career prospects do Alabama students have?

What do you wish you had known in high school about college?

These are just some of the questions that Blueprints students from Central High School in Tuscaloosa asked during our recent field trip to Shelton State Community College and the University of Alabama.

Central High School is within walking distance of UA’s campus, but for many students our Blueprint’s field trip was an opportunity to interact and engage with the University of Alabama on a whole new level.

Our Central students spent their time at the University of Alabama with a group of current Honors students. During their visit, our Blueprints students seized this opportunity to find out how college aligns to their diverse interests, and in turn, they saw college was for them.

Ajowa, a 9th grader remarked that this college visit was different than anything the students had experienced “because last time we didn’t get to go inside or walk around UA, this time we went inside different parts of UA and walked around campus and saw different folks.” Students at Central have seen the campus, but it was many of their first times to see hidden gems of the University, like the Alabama Natural History Museum housed on the University’s campus.

On this trip, our Central students not only toured college campuses, but they also formed relationships. JaKayla, another Central 9th grader, said her “favorite part was when the tour guide [Robert] called me Ms. Leader. This trip made me think harder about what I want to do in college. I learned that you have to have a set plan for college, after college, and life.” For JaKayla, building a relationship over the course of the day with Robert, a 4th year student who is the Executive Director of Honors Educational Outreach, was a way for college to become more exciting and more personal.

Below are a some of photos from our visit. Thank you to Shelton State and the Honors College at the University of Alabama for making this possible.

 

Central High School students at the University of Alabama’s Alabama Natural History Museum with a dinosaur found in Alabama.

Central High School students at the University of Alabama’s Alabama Natural History Museum with a dinosaur found in Alabama.

 

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JaKayla, Central 9th grader, with Robert Pendley, University of Alabama Honors College Executive Director of Educational Outreach

 

Central High School students learning about the SOAR Institute, which provides free tutoring and academic services at Shelton State Community College.

Central High School students learning about the SOAR Institute, which provides free tutoring and academic services at Shelton State Community College.

 

Montevallo High School Juniors Go to College

Wednesday, April 24th, 2013

Last Monday, Montevallo High School juniors got a taste of college life when they visited APP Higher Education Member University of Montevallo.

The 40 Blueprints College Access Initiative students attended college classes, explored the historic campus, enjoyed lunch in Anna Irvin Dining Hall, and talked with faculty and students about the college experience.

MHS alumnus Dr. Jim Day welcomed the students to campus and shared his personal journey from high school to military, college, and career as a UM history professor.  Student Government Association members Rachael Swokowski and Shelby Mays also spoke to the students about their pathways to college.

Many students had graduated from the Blueprints early awareness program as 9th graders.  The 11th graders focused on specific details of the decisions they are making about their futures, including upcoming financial aid and college application deadlines.

Christina Morris was the Montevallo Blueprints valedictorian when she was a freshman.  After completing the college coaching program, Christina said that “as you go through life, you have to forge your own path, even though sometimes you have to go it alone.”

Mentor Ashley Humphrey, a Mass Communications major, said one of the lessons she learned was that “to get respect, you have to treat others with respect.”

The field trip concluded with a graduation ceremony to celebrate the students’ completion of the Blueprints college coaching curriculum. Kirklynn Hamby, who completed the most independent enrichment activities during the semester, won $50 to celebrate her achievements.

Thank you to Montevallo High School and the University of Montevallo for their work promoting a college-going culture. In addition, special thanks to Dr. Laurel Hitchcock, assistant professor of social work, and the students of her Human Behavior class for their service-learning partnership and to the Office of Service Learning and Community Engagement for coordinating the day.

 

 

Do You Need Money for College?

Thursday, March 28th, 2013

APP’s Blueprints College Access Initiative sponsoring FAFSA completion events in Chilton, Franklin, Perry, and Shelby Counties. 
University of Montevallo Financial Aid Officers Kim Miller and Maria Parker, Blueprints Mentor Ashley Humphrey, AmeriCorps*VISTA Courtney Bennett, Blueprints Mentor Darlena Garner, Blueprints Program Coordinator Hannah Selles, and Blueprints Volunteer Jay Causey at a FAFSA completion event in Montevallo.

University of Montevallo Financial Aid Officers Kim Miller and Maria Parker, Blueprints Mentor Ashley Humphrey, AmeriCorps*VISTA Courtney Bennett, Blueprints Mentor Darlena Garner, Blueprints Program Coordinator Hannah Selles, and Blueprints Volunteer Jay Causey at a FAFSA completion event in Montevallo.

Through a collaboration with the Alabama Department of Education, members of its higher education alliance, and local school districts, APP’s Blueprints College Access Initiative is aiming to boost Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) completion by 20 percent in Chilton, Franklin, Perry, and Shelby Counties.

FAFSA completion helps students and their families access federal and most state financial support, including grants, scholarships, the lowest-cost student loans and work-study opportunities.  Studies show that 9 out of 10 students who complete the FAFSA go on to postsecondary education.

Blueprints held FAFSA completion events in February in Birmingham, Marion, Montevallo, and Phil Campbell. We are working with Judson College, Northwest-Shoals Community College and the University of Montevallo on intensive efforts in Chilton, Franklin, Perry, and Shelby Counties.  Over the next month we will host additional FAFSA completion events, provide individual assistance, and host FAFSA follow- up events where professionals and volunteers will help students and their families interpret financial aid packages offered by postsecondary institutions.

Blueprints works to increase educational attainment and create a college-going culture in the state.  Alabama ranks 44th in educational attainment, which is closely liked to personal and economic well-being.

If you are an educator, parent or student at a public high school in Chilton, Franklin, Perry or Shelby Counties and would like to host a FAFSA completion event or need assistance with completing the FAFSA or interpreting aid awards please contact us at 205.939.1408.

Further resources can be found  at www.blueprintsalabama.org and http://studentaid.ed.gov/.